Cowdray Estate Midhurst England, GU29 0AQ

As a destination, Cowdray Estate offers a range of premium country pursuits, from golf on a Championship course, award winning clay-pigeon shooting, fly fishing on the River Rother, walking in Cowdray Park, cycling, riding, and polo events, to hospitality at Cowdray Farm Shop & Café, accommodation at Cowdray Lodge, wedding venues and the stunning Cowdray House.

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The 16,500-acre, family-owned Cowdray Estate in Midhurst – the heart of the stunning South Downs National Park – is steeped in history and heritage.

From Tudor ruins, world-renowned polo, and exclusive mini breaks, to award-winning farm shops and countryside walks – this unique English estate, which is sometimes referred to as Cowdray Park, is waiting to be explored.

Cowdray Heritage Ruins

The Cowdray Heritage Ruins are one of England’s most important early Tudor houses and Cowdray is known to have been visited by both King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I.

In September 1793, whilst undergoing repairs and refurbishments for the impending marriage of the 8th Viscount Montague, a devastating fire took hold and most of the property was destroyed. The Kitchen Tower is the only part of the mansion to remain intact.

Cowdray Ruins can be viewed from Midhurst town centre or explore the site during one of the Heritage Events or guided tours that take place on a regular basis. These events allow an unexpected peek into life as a Tudor on the Cowdray Estate and provide entertainment for the whole family.

An image of people and a dog walking toward the Cowdray Ruins in Midhurst West Sussex, part of the Cowdray Estate

Cowdray Ruins in Midhurst West Sussex, part of the Cowdray Estate – courtesy Cowdray Estate/Visit Midhurst

Sport

Polo: Cowdray is world-renowned as the home of British polo where you can be entertained at exhilarating matches throughout the summer season, including the Gold Cup for the British Open Championships. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also take up polo tuition at the Academy.

Golf: Golf has been played at the beautiful 18-hole Cowdray course for well over a century. The Club is owned by the Viscount Cowdray and provides stunning views over the South Downs National Park. A warm welcome is extended to all who visit.

Cowdray House

Rolling hills and open skies are not the only features which make Cowdray House a wonderful location. Set in 110 acres of private gardens, grounds and parkland, Cowdray House is a spectacular venue for exclusive-use hire. It was home to the Estate’s original polo field, commonly referred to as the House Ground, and guests today can enjoy polo lessons during their stay.

With beautifully landscaped gardens and a broad range of luxury facilities including both an indoor and outdoor pool as well as a bowling alley, Cowdray House has all the luxury whilst maintaining the warmth of a family home.

Walking: From forest to ruins

Cowdray is home to miles of spectacular walks over a variety of landscapes, which can be enjoyed by all. Take a walk past the historic Cowdray Ruins, explore Cowdray Forest, admire the Queen Elizabeth Oak in the Deer Park near the picturesque picnic spot of Benbow Pond, enjoy Lawns Polo Grounds, explore the John Cowdray Arboretum or take a walk to Cowdray Farm Shop & Café – there’s so much to choose from.

Farm Shop Café

Open for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea, Cowdray Farm Shop Cafes menu is created by its team of chefs to provide delicious dishes from favourites such as its famous Full English and Cowdray burger and triple cooked chips, to inspiring vegetarian and vegan dishes.

The team use estate produce and other local suppliers for their ingredients where possible, ensuring a connection to the same beautiful landscape that their customers can view as they dine.

Holiday accommodation 

If you’re looking to spend longer at Cowdray, Cowdray’s holiday cottages are the perfect base for exploring Cowdray and the South Downs National Park, and only half an hour’s drive from the coast. The light and airy cottages are located next to the picturesque Benbow Pond, with easy access to a wide network of footpaths. They are self-catering and are well-equipped for families, groups and individuals alike.

If you are travelling with a bigger group, the 18th Century Cowdray Lodge offers the perfect location for up to 16 guests to enjoy a break.

The Lodge overlooks the Polo Grounds & Cowdray Heritage as well as the town of Midhurst.

The Lodge comprises of four individually furnished en-suite double rooms, the Polo Suite with its double bedroom and separate sitting room overlooking the polo fields. The Cowdray Suite boasts double and twin rooms and includes a sitting area.

The delightfully romantic “Bothy” is located across from the main Lodge. It has a roll top bath in the bedroom, with wonderful views across Cowdray Park.

All rooms are a very short walk from the 19th Hole, Cowdray’s Golf Clubhouse which is open to all and serves, breakfast, lunch and a fantastic Sunday lunch (from 1st November each year),

Cowdray Hall and Therapy Rooms

Cowdray Hall is a place where you can step aside from the challenges of daily life, and take time out to deepen your connection with yourself, your community and the wider world.

Cowdray Hall offers a broad variety of emotional and spiritual workshops, retreats, events and weekly classes focusing on all areas of self-development.

There are three main therapy rooms. The Chapel is a peaceful and intimate space with excellent acoustics, regularly used for yoga, Pilates, meditation and chanting. The Main Hall is a light and impressive room. The Meeting Room is a beautifully lit and carpeted room which includes audio visual equipment.

Other things to do

sheep in fields along the South Downs Way

The 160km South Downs Way runs right across the Chichester District, offering great walking and cycling opportunities.

An image of a sculpture - part of the heathlands sculpture trail in South Downs National Park

The new Heathland Sculpture Trail in South Downs National Park is the perfect opportunity to get into the great outdoors and appreciate the changing of the seasons. Seven intricate sculptures are located across different heathland sites within the park, with…

A photograph of a cyclist on a country lane

Experience the stunning scenery and varied terrain by cycling in the The South Downs National Park

an image showing horses and riders playing polo at Cowdray Park in Midhurst

Cowdray Park is Internationally recognised as the home of British Polo and is the host of the Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship.

A view of the pond at Weald & Downland Living Museum

Come and explore a fascinating collection of rescued rural buildings set in a beautiful 40-acre site within the South Downs National Park. Discover the stories of the people who lived and worked in them over a 1,000-year period ­ from…

An image of people and a dog walking toward the Cowdray Ruins in Midhurst West Sussex, part of the Cowdray Estate

The ruins at Cowdray Estate, often referred to as Cowdray Castle, are the remains of one of the country’s most important Tudor houses

An image of the Queen Elizabeth Oak Tree on Cowdray Estate Midhurst

Benbow Pond in Easebourne, just outside the centre of Midhurst and close to the A272 is a picturesque picnic stop where you’ll meet the resident ducks, swans, geese and other bird life and is part of the Cowdray Estate.  …

Moonlight Cottage Cocking and West Dean Woods Trail

A 7.5 mile circular walk from Cocking, West Sussex in the heart of the South Downs. The walking route heads south, climbing steeply to reach the South Downs Way and then follows this ridge-top path west to perform a circuit…